Photo: Sarah-Jade Champagne
The two singles finals at the Granby National Bank Championships were played on Sunday and featured a pair of Canadians attempting to win the Women’s ITF World Tennis Tour and ATP Challenger Tour trophies.
In the men’s final, 24-year-old Alexis Galarneau of Laval, Quebec captured the first ATP Challenger title of his career thanks to a 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 victory over 19-year-old qualifier Philip Sekulic of Australia, ranked no. 477 in the world. There wasn’t much to separate the two plays until the eighth game of the third set when Galarneau earned the decisive break of serve to seal the biggest triumph of his career to date.
Galarneau was playing his second Challenger final and his second on Canadian soil after finishing as the runner-up in Winnipeg last season. He follows in the footsteps of his compatriot Gabriel Diallo who also took home top honours in Granby last year to win his maiden Challenger crown. This result will allow him to achieve a career-high ranking of no. 162 on Monday which will allow him to earn direct entry into the qualifying draw at the U.S. Open later this summer.
In the women’s championship match, Toronto’s Katherine Sebov came up just short in a thrilling three-set encounter that hit the three-hour mark. Trailing 2-5 in the final frame, the 24-year-old managed to overcome the deficit to get back on even terms at 5-5, but was ultimately defeated 6-4, 2-6, 7-5 by third-seeded American Kayla Day despite a very valiant effort.
Sebov was playing her second final in Granby after reaching the same stage in 2017. She was also contesting her second ITF title match of the season and lifted the trophy in Toronto earlier this year. Meanwhile, this is Day’s second ITF crown of 2023 as she won the tournament in Bonita Springs in May.
Their performances this week are a great confidence boost for both Galarneau and Sebov as the North American summer hard court season continues.